Bring on your ideas about how to harness the power of the Internet.

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Post by iknow » Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:35 am

Is there anyone else out there that's ready to call BULLSHIT on HD Radio? I for one am.

The programming is TERRIBLE! The signal is TERRIBLE! It was a knee-jerk reaction to satellite radio -- which is gonna fail.

It's the most advertised product on radio for over two years and the messaging has been at best "high school" ... there is practically NO demand for the technology in its present form. Sure it's cool for tagging, but for listening?

When the HD signal drops out, you dive for the volume control to turn it up -- and when the HD signal returns you scramble to turn it down.

The only folks making money on this are iBiquity, the radio manufacturers, and of course the lawyers.

Has any one in radio seen any real $$$$ yet from HD Radio? I thought not.

HD Radio = HUGE DISASTER!!! Let's stick a fork in this and concentrate on fixing our current AM and FM signals by providing better programming which will result in better ratings, and eventually better cash flow.

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Post by rowdyron » Tue Oct 13, 2009 4:18 pm


I understand the concept but its definitely not needed. When stations made the transfer
from AM to FM frequency it was huge! The quality of sound was greatly improved and
people loved it.

As we all know HD set out to improve the quality of FM that is still standard for most stations
today. Well this hasn't exactly gone nearly as well. Now, there are so many choices for consumers
they don't know what to do with them. Buying a new radio for $100 to slightly improve the quality
of their music is not really an option that many have gone with.

It will be interesting to see where the listeners will turn to but as we know this isn't it.

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Post by Rodman » Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:04 pm

There is more interest in internet radio than HD radio

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Post by PocketRadio » Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:41 am

I've been calling BS on HD Radio for a couple of years. This is just a scheme by iBiquity and its investors to bilk radio for what it is worth. It is also a scheme to jam the smaller, adjacent-channel broadcasters off the dial by iBiquity's Big Group Radio investors. The BBC in the UK is trying to pull off the same fraud:


Keep up the good fight!

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Post by Tom.Jones » Tue Dec 01, 2009 11:25 am

One thing I had to wonder about the technology behind HD and the use of it...

Wasn't one of the key selling points, when it was first released, that the signal was broadcast in a way that the HD enabled receivers would be able to feed multiple items through different channels of a singular station?

Example being a station would use ###.# - 1 for it's primary feed, what the non-HD listeners would get, but ###.# - 2 would be maybe a different blend of music, or a focus on the personalities (or whatever the station feels would be useful there), and ###.# - 3 could be a traffic/weather/local information feed (or, again, whatever the station feels useful)... and so on down the line, up to roughly 5 channels per HD radio station.

It's been mandated for television stations to use that system, as various news stations have one subchannel for the primary broadcast and at least one other for traffic/weather.

And, if this is the case for radio, that when these systems are installed the multi-channel capabilities are enabled (providing that there's no FCC or engineering issues), couldn't that really be where radio could afford to expand?

This is simply a question, not an answer to any problems or really even a suggestion - I understand that there are always factors beyond my comprehension that are in place, and that this possibility might have already been considered and deemed unusable by most stations. I just simply want to understand more about the thought process behind the decisions of if/how HD technology is to be used by various stations.

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Post by BillGoldsmith » Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:03 pm

iBiquity's "HD Radio" (a horrible misnomer) system is capable of accomplishing ONE of these three goals:

1. A slight increase in the perceived sound quality of an FM signal: primarily a lower noise floor and better stereo separation. Not as dramatic as the shift from AM to FM, or from FM mono to stereo -- probably most listeners on most equipment will hear little, if any, difference.

2. The ability to add 1 additional music channel -- of sub-FM audio quality -- at the expense of the quality level of the main channel. The main channel will probably sound worse than FM to a sizeable percentage of listeners, about the same to most, maybe better to a few.

3. The ability to add 2 additional music channels -- with fidelity noticeably WORSE than analog FM on ALL channels (including the main channel).

In reading the propaganda from iBiquity, Clear Channel, etc. there is no mention whatsoever of how thoroughly the quality of the audio degrades once you start adding additional audio channels. Anybody with a basic understanding of digital audio will confirm that 96kbps (the throughput of an iBiquity IBOC FM carrier) is enough bandwidth for one high quality HE AAC stream, and that if you try to cram multiple streams into that amount of bandwidth, the quality is going to suffer greatly.

Add this to the inferior coverage, sloppy transitions between analog & digital on most stations, and no way no how do you have something capable of competing with satellite radio or in-car Internet (and if you don't think that's right around the corner, you're -- well, wrong).

A total waste of the industry's time & money.

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Post by yourdigitalwiz » Wed Mar 24, 2010 9:19 am

High Def = Multi-track. Not higher quality or content. The name is terrible. The public does not get it, not does it care. I think a campaign to remind people of the value of broadcast radio is more essential in contrast to digital and time-shifting alternatives

What I would like to see is money and talent put into improving what goes out over the base call sign. That has always worked. Content and talent bring loyal listeners which bring advertisers Multiple streams of music that require new hardware cannot.

Just today iBiquity posted their own self-serving survey claiming that people want HD in their portable devices. To get High Definition TV I get a larger and higher res screen, but for High Definition radio I want to listen with a 1/2" speaker or ear buds. Yeah, that's believable <sarcasm>.

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Post by hdradioguy53 » Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:50 pm

Hmm...I don't think its a complete disaster. Maybe it sounded really bad when it first came out, but the technology has improved and I really have seen a significant quality difference. I do realize that a lot of people in the industry believe that the hybrid signal weakens the analog signal...who knows. I know that a lot of consumers are looking for better listening quality. Also, I see it as a way to compete with Satellite radio.

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Post by fmdj1 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 10:02 am

I wonder how many of you actually have HD tuners and really listen to HD channels in your market? I've had one for 2 years now and will say that I can notice the difference between analog and HD on most stations, but it's more what stations do with the HD that will draw the customers.
1. HD uses a compression algorithm from Fraunhofer (yes, the MP3 folks). You get 96 kbps to share between HD1 & HD2. You get another 32 for HD3. If a station decides to do a 50-50 split between their HD1 & 2 for the digital compression, you will here very little difference between the analog and HD. The more you devote to the HD1, the greater you hear the improvement over the analog. The tradeoff, of course, is that your HD2 suffers. So really it depends on how a station wants to do the split as to whether it is worth it to your ears.
2. Most stations are automating their HD2. They seem to think it should start making money before they invest any effort in it. Some people seem to have forgotten it took FM over 20 YEARS to take off. And what caused FM to take off? Was it the sound quality? Not near as much as it was the programming. Top 40 can be thanked for helping carry FM into the stratosphere. Jocks who are now household names got their start on little listened to FM stations, but they were hungry and spun what people wanted.
3. Too many stations are running mp3's on their HD2s. That means they are running double compression. The result=garbage. You can't starve your HD2 for bandwith and then run a compressed song up it. No one wants to listen to that. AM sounds better.

So I wouldn't say HD Radio itself is a disaster. The concept is a good one. More variety and better listening experience. But until we invest the effort into it that will draw the listeners, it will do nothing. The promos running now are near useless. We're telling people to buy HD radios without telling them what they'll get. If we would promote our HD2 formats on our primary channel, then actually do something more than automate mp3's, we might see better results.

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Post by soundhound » Sun Sep 05, 2010 11:25 pm

FM, great points but a technicality.

FM originally gained traction because it was an alternative to AM top 40. The explosion in FM was due to album rock. Now that most stations are run as Top 40 of whatever format they are, perhaps the future of compelling HD programming is to be more experimental, more aggressive, or more musically unique, as the early days of FM were which led to people seeking out the band.

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